292..April 23rd…and all of this time I was sure it was… “You are what you eat”….not “You are what you Paint”…..

“Collage” 2009

“The world is full of abundance and opportunity, but far too many people come to the fountain of life with a sieve instead of a tank car…a teaspoon instead of a steam shovel. They expect little and as a result get little” – Ben Sweetland

I’ve a friend that does very nice collage…and looking at his work reminds me that everything is made up of components….all of the small make the large…and collage is great way of visualizing that…. I’ve never really spent much time doing collage….nor really ever had any interest…the idea of taking existing things…cutting them out and placing them seems like a labor far to calculated and precise….something that would be a very Japanese type of structure….rigid…yet simplistic…ending with a wonderful beauty….I’ve always looked at really talented collage artists as people who probably do puzzles well and can see the big picture long before the picture has emerged or even gotten close to revealing itself…there s something in that ability to know where something should be placed because the holistic approach depends on that one piece at that one moment in time….

as a painter….the same mentality applies…yet the surface is a changeable conversation…if something doesn’t work it can be painted over…covered up….darked or altered enough to eliminate the problem….and I guess I am intrigued by that idea that the problem has been covered…it is still very much there…just not visible…or noticable……every painter I know…does things to their work that only they know about…and maybe will or will not share….it’s like discussing what happens in the bedroom…rarely do we ever…there is an intimate relationship that only the artist has with their work…that probably can’t be conveyed to the audience and if it is..it’s rarely ever understood….

I look at the paintings…some of my friends do…and have an idea what is going on…but there is another completely different world when it is just them and their work….I know this because when I paint…it is a dance I share with the painting…and the dance the painting shares with me…there is refusal to cooperate…their are arguments….anger….denial…speechless moments of anguish and frustration…..but there is always a return to some sense of balance with the work….allowing the painting to take on its own life yet have the artist’s characteristics…delve into the painters mentality without revealing enough to expose too much….

again everything is an amalgamation of all of the small bits….and paintings are no different……from the day the painting is born to its final coat of paint….is a life cycle….within that life cycle has been every emotion of two very distinctive lives…that of the artist and that of the…painting…..

I do believe paintings are self-portraits….I believe they live a life….as the artist as themselves and we as the artists are like Dr. Frankenstein…in some way….people who view the work get to read the painting like we read books…though….through a completely different language…..I don’t have to speak Russian to understand a Russian painters intention….and I may only get a small corner of what the artists is saying….but that corner may be just enough to allow the painting reveal the artist….at least a small part……

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